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     I close my eyes and listen to the far-off voice of the Singer. Her song drifts in and out of hearing as it travels over the sands. Inside, my heart rolls like the red-gold dunes. I soar on distant notes and plummet into moments of silence. Yearning grows. It deepens into desire and finally swallows me whole into need so desperate even Jonah’s flute could not call me back. The rug under my feet shifts softly as I stand. My five sisters watch in silence born of years of slow acceptance. In the part of my mind not devoured by longing, I decide they cannot hear the distant song. My heart aches for them. Then the notes take me once more and I let them guide my feet onto a new path. The folds of my crimson robes trouble my fingers but finally, I free myself and stand naked, the cloth pool...

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